JAKARTA, Indonesia – Hundreds of Islamic hard-liners rallied in front of the tightly guarded American Embassy Saturday, denouncing U.S. President George W. Bush's planned trip to the world's most populous Muslim nation and calling him a terrorist.
"Bush should not come to Indonesia," shouted Muhammad Ismail Yusanto, one of the protest organizers, saying Bush was responsible for the spilling of blood in the Palestinian territories, Iraq and Afghanistan.
The American leader is scheduled to visit Indonesia — seen as a close ally in Washington's war on terror — on Nov. 20, after attending an Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation meeting in Vietnam.
"Bush is the world's number one terrorist," chanted about 600 protesters in at the U.S. Embassy, which was ringed by police.
"He has ordered U.S. troops to colonize Iraq and Afghanistan," they chanted.
Most of Indonesia's 190 million Muslims practice a moderate form of the faith, but hard-liners have made inroads in recent years.
Al Qaeda-linked militants have carried out a series of homicide bombings targeting Western interests in Indonesia since 2002. The government has arrested and put on trial hundreds of suspected terrorists.